Richland County, SC (WLTX) - Thousands of people across the Midlands are still without power because of Hurricane Matthew.
"I don’t even know if I was expecting it or not," 81-year-old Sarah Randolph of Hopkins said.
Randolph lost power for almost four days and says she can't remember the last time she's been in the dark that long since Hurricane Hugo.
"Dark," Randolph said laughingly. "Dark everywhere."
A tree in Randolph's yard knocked over by powerful winds took out her power lines Saturday.
“Even though we tried to work through Saturday morning we essentially did not,” CEO of Tri-County Electric Cooperative Chad Lowder said. “It got to be unsafe so we had to pull all crews back in and we didn't start repairing until 4 o'clock Saturday afternoon.”
Lowder said 15,000 of his 18,000 customers including Randolph were out of power when the hurricane first hit.
“We've had a lot of assistance from outside crews, Alabama, Virginia, we've had in state co-ops who did not get hit as hard come in and help,” Lowder explained. “Essentially where working about 16 hour shifts.”
The company has been able to get the number down 500 and even Lowder has been helping in the field.
But with broken poles, downed trees and limited access to certain rural areas, Lowder says it's been tough to get everyone back on quickly.
At last check, more than 100,000 people across the state are still without power.
Tri-County Electric plans to have all customers back on by Thursday. Black River Electric hopes to have their users all on by Saturday and Duke Energy says it could be Sunday before all power is restored.
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